‘Black Voices Project’ chronicles race, citizenship of African-American community
It was June, and Lola Akingbade was in Ferguson, Missouri, looking to capture the zeitgeist in the wake of civil unrest. Unarmed black teenager Michael Brown had been killed by white police officer Darren Wilson on the streets of this quaint St. Louis suburb just nine months ago, sparking riots and calls for police reform.
“I was angry,” said Akingbade, a third-year student ofrhetoric and behavioral neuroscience at Northeastern University, “but I also wanted to harness my education to make a positive impact in the community.”
Akingbade attended talks and rallies, seeking out African-Americans with keen perspectives on policing, protesting, and political representation. And then she interviewed them in a rented office space in the heart of downtown St. Louis, asking insightful questions of some two dozen concerned citizens, military veterans, community activists, youth organizers, faith leaders, and nonprofit CEOs.